English extras - seven top tips

Zoe Lynch

1 Time every task you complete from now until the exam Try to finish your answer within the time frame.

Discipline yourself. If you are running out of time put a conclusion on your answer and move on. You must stick to your time plan rigidly.

2Buy a notebook Compose a list of useful phrases, verbs, vocabulary etc from any source you encounter.

Read this list a few times a week. By the time the exam arrives, this stock set should be in your head.

3If you have chosen narrative essays for your composition, write a few character profiles and settings No matter what titles face you in June your essay will always include characters and setting.

4 Plan before you pen Every answer you write should be coherent and should closely match the question title.

5Re-read your work at the end of every paragraph. This trick helps you spot silly mistakes immediately before you move on. This will create a sense of control.

6Know quotes for Paper 2 inside out They should come as naturally to you as the alphabet. Quotation is key to Paper 2.

7My final piece of advice -- do not take risks Study each poet, Hamlet essay and comparative theme equally. Mute all predictions. Success in the Leaving Cert is not based on gambling. Instead, it rewards hard work and intelligence.